World Trade Organization (WTO) Works as a Global Association in Managing the Principles of Trade between Countries

A K M Noor A Rabbi, Kazi Adnan Mostafa


There is a wide variety of measures which influence market access for goods. The two main categories are tariffs and Non-Tariff Barriers. Both tariffs and NTBs can be hindrance to international trade in goods. The World Trade Organization (WTO) and other similar organizations have been striving to eradicate the restrictions to market access.

The World Trade Organization (WTO) is the main worldwide global association managing the principles of trade between countries. The main objective of WTO is to guarantee that trade flows as smoothly, predictably and freely as possible. The roles of WTO includes: operating a global system of trade rules, acts as a medium for negotiating trade agreements, it settles trade disputes between its members and it supports the needs of developing countries. Major decisions are made by the members either by ministers or by the delegates of WTO. The principal source of WTO law is the WTO agreement and its multiple Annexes.  Moreover, the original agreement, namely GATT 1947 was amended and updated in 1994 (GATT 1994) which plays an integral role in WTO.

Tariff Barrier is a financial form of tax or an amount of money that is imposed to transports goods from one custom are to another often one country to another country. This is the most common barrier for goods to access into the market. Moreover, tariff in export is another obstacle of trading goods. These are termed as export duties which are clearly mentioned through an example of the case China-Raw Materials.

Non- Tariff barriers (NTBs) refer to all private and governmental policies that exist to distort the volume, commodity- composition or direction of trade in goods and services. Non-tariff barriers include Quantitative Restrictions such as quotas and other NTBs including lack of transparency in trade regulation.

QRs are expressed in a form where the volume or value of imports or exports is limited, either on a global or a country- selective basis. The only protective barriers that WTO Members can institute or maintain are "duties, taxes or other charges" compatible with the GATT rules.

Tariff Quota refers to a quantity which can be imported at a certain duty. Any quantity above that amount will be subjected to a higher tariff. According to the GATT Panel report, a Tariff Quota (hereinafter TQ), is not a quota and it is not a QR. However, TRQs are different from QRs in the sense of GATT Article XI. There are some other non- tariff barriers to access to market other than QRs, which are referred to as ‘other non- tariff barriers including numerous measures and actions such as, technical barriers to trade, customs formalities and procedures, and government procurement practice. All of these can significantly restrict access to market.

There is an urgent need to reduce all kinds of barriers and creates an open-gate for the countries to export and import the goods. The WTO should make an effort to lessen the barriers and create a smooth less complex platform for trading goods. 


WTO (World Trade Organization), Tariff barriers, Non-Tariff barriers, QRs (Quantitative Restrictions), TQ (Tariff Quota), GATT 1994, Discretionary Import Authorization, Technical barriers, Barriers to Trade in Services

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